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English Literature A Level

If you’re an avid reader, and a lover of literature, this highly-regarded study programme is a natural choice for you. You’ll read and examine a real variety of writing from different periods and genres, building on the analytical skills you’ve acquired at GCSE level.

The course texts can vary, but currently include such great titles as ‘The Great Gatsby’ by F. Scott Fitzgerald, Selected Poetry of Carol Ann Duffy, Shakespeare’s ‘Othello’ and a collection of poetry on the theme of love through the ages. On this A Level English Literature course, you will also learn how to analyse unseen texts and how to apply your skills in comparison to a wide variety of texts.

In the second year, you will be encouraged to follow your own interests in coursework through the comparison of two texts. You will also go on to study a further range of texts such as ‘Waterland’ by Graham Swift, ‘A Streetcar Named Desire’ by Tennessee Williams and another collection of poetry.

Apply for this course

Select from the start date/s below…

Sep 2024 : North Devon : Full-time
Course Code : FTB013 (2024)
Level : Level 3
Duration : 2 Years
North Devon Campus Apply

Course details


Assessment will be through both exam and coursework. There is no coursework in year one.

In the final year, there are two exams and a coursework submission:

Paper 1: Love through the Ages

Paper 2: Modern Times: Literature from 1945 to the present day. Study of three texts.

Non-exam assessment: an independent critical study of 2,500 words on two texts.

Entry Requirements

To be accepted onto this Level 3 programme, you must hold at least five GCSEs at grade 4 or above, including GCSE Maths and English Language.

This must also include a grade 5 in English Literature.


This is a subject which is highly regarded in both further education and in future careers. A Level English Literature is particularly useful if you want to study other humanities subjects. Our students have gone on to follow careers in the media, publishing, marketing and teaching, as well as some pursuing academic careers.

Facilities and resources

The course is taught using books, booklets, critical material and some online resources. All A Level English lessons are taught in well-equipped classrooms that have interactive whiteboards and you will have access to computer rooms and laptops as required.

Learning Technologies and Library Services offer relaxed, quiet and comfortable places to study. You will find a variety of private and group study spaces on campus and multiple computers that can be pre-booked. The college WiFi also allows you to bring your own devices to use.

There are always friendly members of staff on hand to help you find information to assist your study, and you can borrow items including books, journals and media equipment in the Library.


Q: Which English subject should I choose – Literature or Language?

A: It depends on your interests. English Literature is best for those who enjoy reading and discussing poetry, prose and drama. English Language looks at how English works and why people use language in the way they do. If you have a keen interest in doing English at a higher level or simply enjoy both analysing literature and language in society, maybe you should consider doing both Language and Literature A Levels as two full subjects.

Study Programme

Every full-time student at Petroc will have their own Study Programme which will include:

– Your academic or vocational qualification.

– Maths and English Language development – if you have not achieved GCSE grade 4 in either of these subjects.

– Work Experience – hours will vary depending on your qualification and course level.

– Tutor Support – to support your personal, academic and professional development.

– Sustainability – helping you to identify how you can improve the sustainability of your future employment sectors.

– Personal Development Awards – developing six key areas of personal and employability behaviours to prepare you for the working world.

Apply for this course

Starting Date : 09/09/2024
Course Code : FTB013 (2024) North Devon Campus Apply

Why Petroc should be your first choice

Petroc offers high quality education and training across North and Mid Devon. We provide outstanding learning, excellent facilities, strong connections to employers and a supportive environment to help you fulfil your education goals and set you on your path to the career of your dreams.

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We offer a supportive and inclusive environment where you can flourish and feel a valued member of the college and wider community. 


Our teaching spaces and facilities are some of the best in the region, providing stimulating and true-to-life learning environments. 


We’ll provide you with the experiences you need to be ready for employment or the next step on your educational journey.

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